The NBA announced today that Kiki VanDeWeghe has been promoted to Executive Vice President, Basketball Operations. VanDeWeghe, who has been serving as Senior Vice President, Basketball Operations, will lead the Basketball Operations department effective immediately.
The league also will hire a new President, League Operations. VanDeWeghe and Mike Bantom, Executive Vice President, Referee Operations, will both report to that person.
The moves come as two top executives depart the league office. President, Basketball Operations Rod Thorn retired this month after more than 50 years as a player, coach, and executive in professional basketball. In addition, President, League Operations Joel Litvin will be stepping down effective Sept. 1 after a 27-year career in the league office.
“Kiki is one of the sharpest basketball minds in the NBA,” said NBA Commissioner Adam Silver. “In addition to his storied UCLA and NBA playing career plus his extensive experience as a general manager, coach, and TV analyst, he has most recently helped drive innovations in analytics that are reshaping the league in areas such as scheduling, game statistics, and player health.”
VanDeWeghe joined the league office in April 2013 as Vice President, Basketball Operations and was promoted to Senior Vice President, Basketball Operations later the same year. He has been involved in a broad range of basketball matters, including the development of playing rules and interpretations, game analytics, and policies and procedures relating to the operation of NBA games.
Before his time with the league office, VanDeWeghe served as the general manager of the New Jersey Nets from 2008 to 2010 and the general manager of the Denver Nuggets from 2001 to 2006. His tenure in New Jersey included a stint as interim head coach during the 2009-10 season. He also worked as an NBA analyst for ESPN and Fox Sports.
VanDeWeghe’s NBA playing career spanned 13 years, with the Nuggets, Portland Trail Blazers, New York Knicks, and Los Angeles Clippers, during which he averaged 19.7 points per game, made two All-Star appearances, and helped his teams reach the playoffs 12 times.
Bantom, an NBA executive for 26 years, has overseen the league’s officiating program since 2012. He was hired by the NBA in 1989 after a 16-year professional playing career. Bantom averaged 12.1 points and 6.4 rebounds in nine NBA seasons before playing seven more seasons in Italy.